ESL Pro League Season 5 continues this evening and even at this early stage, things are not going to plan for either of the teams competing in tonight’s first fixture. G2 sit bottom of the league with only one win recorded for their six losses, whilst HellRaisers are 3-5.
HellRaisers (67/10, 7.70 Betway) vs G2 (3/4, 1.75 Betway), Draw (13/10, 2.30 Betway esports)
Given G2 sit bottom of the table, occupying the spot which would see them instantly relegated to ESEA Premier, this is a must win match for them against a fellow relegation candidate. Especially given teams such as Mousesports, LDLC, Kinguin and Heroic, who would have been considered the most likely for relegation at the start of the season, are overperforming, these two teams would be the current favourites for the drop.
Map One – Inferno – HellRaisers (27/10, 3.70 138) vs G2 (7/20, 1.35 GGBet)
G2 have shown a willingness to play Inferno, tonight’s first map. Already their T side looks formidable, winning their T halves 9-6 against North, and 13-2 against PRIDE. It was on the CT side that they struggled against North, however it is a map that should suit their playstyle in the long term. The shared sniping duties of Kenny “kennyS” Schrub and Richard “shox” Papillon should theoretically provide G2 with an early round dimension that most other teams will not have on the map, requiring the T side to expend their grenades to gain early round map control, particularly on banana, and enable them to ensure that they go into after-plant situations without a considerable disadvantage.
HellRaisers’ first Inferno match took place last night, as the decider against fnatic, who have been seen play the map a few times. They lost 16-7, showing little promise. Vladyslav “bondik” Nechyporchuk was particularly ineffective. In the first half, HellRaisers only picked up 5 rounds on CT, though it should be noted fnatic are a strong terrorist side team on the map. The second half is more concerning for their prospects in this match, as they lost 6-2, suggesting their executes are nothing particularly special. Against an underprepared HellRasiers side, G2’s CT deficiencies will not likely be exposed.
Given that G2’s terrorist side should be a whitewash, and that they should be able to string together a reasonable half on CT, backing them to win -3.5 rounds on the handicap at 1.75 is advised.
Map Two – Overpass – G2 (4/9, 1.44 GGBet) vs HellRaisers (9/5, 2.80 32Red)
The second match of the day will be on Overpass. This is a map which G2 have been more than willing to play, but have had little success on, losing to Heroic, twice, before a close win over Space Soldiers. Their main issue has been an inability to get kennyS involved in the game, and that is unlikely to change overnight.
HellRaisers have generally outperformed their expected level on Overpass, particularly at the tail end of 2016, where they beat both Cloud9 and NiP. Since their victory over Tricked in January, they went two months without playing the map in an official game before losing to Spirit, who are nowhere near the same calibre, even though HellRaisers picked the map. They were happy to play it at the ELEAGUE Major, with it failing to make an appearance in the random map generator.
With G2 stuttering on Overpass, it would not be prudent to back them at such short prices on map 2. Despite G2’s advantage in terms of firepower, HellRaisers have succeeded against stronger teams than them on paper previously on Overpass. As such, backing them +3.5 rounds on the handicap at close to even money seems more than fair.